At the end of a Book Club Influencer panel, I approached Glory Edim—founder of the Well-Read Black Girl universe and—leaving all professional agenda behind—stuck out my hand and said, “I’ve just always wanted to meet you.” Can you blame me? Glory’s busted the entire world of well-read black girls wide open, promoting black women writers and creating a community for girls like her (like us). By doing this out of her sheer love of books, she’s revealed to publishers the value of black women readership. Naturally, her Instagram is booming with 68K followers (because, if you didn’t know: we show up where we’re represented). This brand of black girl magic is so pervasive that the likes of Lena Waithe was caught wearing a Well-Read Black Girl tee-shirt in her Vanity Fair feature.
While I’m not an influencer marketer by trade (if such a thing exists in publishing), on my first foray into this trendy sect in marketing, I immediately wanted to know where the influencers of color like Glory were, like a prospective black student looking for her people at college orientation. I not only wanted to find people that shared my passion in promoting #ownvoices writers and diverse books, but writers, readers, bloggers, and book lovers that amplify the notion that there are in fact well-read people of color marketers should be connecting with. In my search for POC readers, I stumbled upon some Bookstagrammers every book lover and Instagram user alike should follow: those building a community around their favorite reads, industry insiders marketing the titles they proudly work on and the stories that drive their passion for books, and people who straight up share my love for books. Sure, these accounts should be on any book marketer’s radar, but if you, like me, just want to connect with some online book nerds, here are some accounts you should follow.
1. Well-Read Black Girl
Well-Read Black Girl doesn’t just provide a place for readers to discuss their favorite lit by black women, but WRBG educates followers on some of the greats that have paved the way for the contemporary writers we’re drawn to today.
Check out Glory’s personal Instagram too!
2. Book Girl Magic
As a marketer, I fell in love with Book Girl Magic’s eye for branding and community building efforts. Head to her Instagram for gorgeous bookish pictures, quotes, prompts, and reviews. Visit her blog BookGirlMagic.com and discover her favorite books.
3. Coloring Books
Who better to get book recommendations than from an industry insider? Ebony LaDelle is the founder of Coloring Books which promotes diverse adult and children’s lit. Sign up for the newsletter and keep up with Ebony’s favorites.
4. Black Book Quotes
Visit Leila’s feed to celebrate the beautiful and profoundly moving language of the best black literature from the last few decades.
5. Black Coffee Books 35
Lauren is a writer from Ireland who loves coffee and loves books. The easy and nature-filled aesthetic overflowing from her feed is worth the follow, alone.
6. Books for the Soul
Bianca, another industry insider, lovingly curates her shelf and Instagram with books that “educate, motivate, and inspire.” Books for the Soul is the perfect place to fall in love with forthcoming books and rediscover old favorites.
7. The Guy with the Book
Faroukh, from Saudi Arabia, has an eye-pleasing feed with awesome book recs (some editions us US readers may not even recognize), stunning photography, and yummy-looking smoothie bowls.
8. Books & Brunch Book Club
Black girls love book clubbing over brunch and mimosas, too. As someone who works on book club titles, I absolutely love Celita’s book club picks—diverse stories that span genres and show love to adult and YA titles.